Film News: ‘Terminator: Genisys’ Resets With More of Arnold Schwarzenegger

Caution: This news flash contains spoilers.

As we approach 2015, we already know one cinematic trend will be continuing: going for a reset or a reboot on a series. In recent years, we’ve seen it with “The Amazing Spider-Man” and “Star Trek.” With the former, production companies return to exploring the origin story, making it unnecessary to watch a previous series. In the latter case, the reset is a spin on the origin story, coming about because someone interferes with the timeline and throws everything out of whack. In both cases, making comparisons with the older films is an inevitable activity.

Altering time is the situation in the upcoming “Terminator: Genisys,” as shown in the new trailer for the fifth Terminator film in the franchise:

John Connor (Jason Clarke) sends Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) back in time to save Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke). However, Sarah doesn’t need any rescuing (it’s the opposite for Reese) because she has a terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger) on her side already. There seem to be a lot of Arnold terminators running around in this movie, even fighting each other! It’s probably difficult for some of us to imagine the “Terminator” series entirely without Arnold Schwarzenegger, let alone the words “I’ll be back.” He’s been excited about returning to action films since the end of his terms as California governor, something he mentioned when I had the opportunity to attend the 2012 release of his autobiography, “Total Recall.” Some films have not fared so well, but others like “The Expendables” franchise have pulled in the box office dollars.

Arnold Schwarzenegger in Washington, DC. Washington Post Live discussion and book signing in 2012. Photo by Pat Cuadros.

Arnold Schwarzenegger at the Hamilton in Washington, DC. Washington Post Live discussion and book signing in 2012. Photo by Pat Cuadros.

It’ll be interesting to see how the varying elements from the previous Terminator movies play out in “Genisys.” Can Judgement Day be stopped this time? I’d venture to guess that “Genisys” does not fix the problem of Judgement Day, which has always been described as “inevitable.” Otherwise, it’s the premature end of what could be a new trilogy (or a four-part series). Messing with Sarah Connor’s time stream is not new in itself; there was the short-lived and uneven “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” on FOX, where she and her son jumped forward to 2007. “Genisys” appears to be a much better venture than “TSCC” and leaves a plenty of room for other developments. For instance, will Kyle Reese’s part extend past a single feature film?

Among the many questions on our minds, I’ll put forth two additional points. Given all the different “Arnold Terminators,” there may be one machine to focus on as an ally for Sarah and Reece. Will this Terminator be like the machine from the second movie? Or will he be of a different mettle? Secondly, Matt Smith (“Doctor Who”) has also been cast a role in the film but he was not in the trailer. What’s his character’s “connection” to John Connor? Perhaps we’ll uncover that information in the next promo.

“Terminator: Genisys” comes to U.S. theaters in July 2015.

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